An unprecedented alliance of more than 700 companies, industry associations, labour unions, governments, and civil society groups are challenging Canada’s provincial premiers to work together to develop a Canadian energy strategy that would make the nation a global clean-energy leader.
“Oil sands workers, environmentalists, venture capitalists, First Nations leaders, and faith groups alike agree that Canada should bet on a 21st century energy model—one that will slow global warming and steadily reduce pollution, while producing abundant jobs and clean energy for future generations,” said Merran Smith, director of the Energy Initiative at Tides Canada.
The ad-hoc alliance, which collectively represents the interests of millions of Canadians, came together under the banner of a new program called Clean Energy Canada. Participants have all endorsed principles and a framework to develop a Canadian energy strategy that will deliver energy security, jobs and prosperity, address climate change, and protect the environment.
They also agreed any such plan must move the nation forward on sustainable transportation, eliminate energy waste, green Canada’s energy supply, and put in place innovative financing to pay for the needed investments.
Canada’s provincial premiers are expected to discuss an energy strategy when they meet later this month at their annual Council of the Federation summit.
“While we recognize that fossil fuels play a leading role in today’s economy, we must urgently create a plan to transition the nation to the low-carbon, clean energy economy we want and will need tomorrow,” said Smith.
The endorsers in the ad-hoc alliance believe such a strategy is not only a Canadian leadership responsibility but also a national economic opportunity.
“The global market for renewable energy and clean technology is already estimated at $2 trillion, and could reach $3 trillion by 2020,” added Smith. “A bold new Canadian energy strategy could help us capture a larger share of this opportunity.”